Let’s Begin Again

Anyone who knows me at all, is aware of my passion for fall! It is not because of Pumpkin Spice Lattes, or Sweet Potato Pie, yet cool temperatures and boots are so nice. For me, it is the mindset of “beginnings”. Students return to school, companies begin another fiscal year, and I enjoy cracking open a new journal just to meditate on all the possibilities for each page of life.

How do you need to “begin again”? For some it may be health goals, career goals, or good habits. As the leaves turn, take a moment, and enjoy the changing colors. Smell the pumpkin spice, light a candle, open a journal and a new gel pen. If you have never journaled before, NOW is the perfect time to start. Below are a few prompts to get you started.

Journal writing is so beneficial! In my life, journaling has helped me grow spiritually, facilitated academic success, promoted health, provided financial benefits, and more. If you tried before and stopped, begin again. Like exercise, it is never too late to start. Below are a few prompts to get you started.

Journal Prompts for the Fall Season:

*Take a walk, find a quiet spot, and write about what you saw, changing colors, smells, cools breeze sensation.

*Listen to a song and journal about what you hear, how it makes you feel, memories about the song.

*Sip your favorite pumpkin beverage and write about events of your summer (good or bad).

*Think about your favorite fall activity and write about how that makes your feel or those close to you.

If you are new to journaling, start by writing for 5 minutes. Try writing once a week on the same day of the week if possible. Increase your time as your schedule allows.


“Let this be written for a future generation, that a people not yet created may praise the Lord.”

Psalm 102:18 NIV

For more information about journaling classes, writing workshops or private sessions contact Dee Jones via email or the

 links below.

Dr. Dee Jones: dee@deejones.org


Journal Writing Guide:

Who Names Their Daughter Demetrius: A Guided Journal



Love Is…

Love is ________. You fill in the blank. Several forms of love exist. So many definitions of love are displayed. For me, love is sacrificial, patient, enduring, and unconditional. When I see an older couple holding hands, or a spouse caring for a ill loved one, or a handicap child cared for by a loved one, that spells love to me. I think of the story of St. Valentine who was a 3rd century Roman clergy who died for his faith. I think about my love for others.

Do I love that much? Would I die for my loved ones or for my faith? Do I feel loved when I think of Jesus’s horrible death on the cross? This kind of love is hard to give and hard to receive in human terms. What a sacrifice. I hope you are feeling loved this month and in the months to come. This verse reminds me of how much I am loved regardless of how humans make me feel or when I lack love for others; “For God so loved the world, he gave his one and only Son”. I read this and put my name in place of the word “the world” and this quote is very personal. Put your name there and feel the love for you. I hope this Valentine’s Day and everyday, you feel the love of others and of our loving God.

How do you define love? What helps you feel loved? ?

John 3:16-17 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. ESV




Surprised by a Prayer

Baltimore have changed significantly over the past 15 years. Yet, the homeless population remains constant. I must admit, my perception of Baltimore has changed over the years as well. When I attended the University of Maryland in the 1990s, locals advised me not to look anyone in the eye. We would hear of robberies and other altercations on the streets near the college. Most stories were negative and left little room for compassion as we pursued careers in nursing, medicine, or social work.  

A homeless person may carry a cardboard sign with the following words: help, need food, God bless you, will work for food, and so forth. Lately, I have been impressed with people who give money, clothing, care packages and even tents for the homeless populace. Yes, my perception has changed and I see glimmers of hope.

As I am moved to do my part to help those less fortunate than myself, I’ve wondered about their stories. When given the opportunity to chat, I find the feedback to be varied. I have received prayer requests for work, housing needs, help with job interviews and more. One story was one of joy and gratitude when provided a tent for shelter. Seeing more tents along the Baltimore streets are a sign of hope and that somebody cares.

On my way through Baltimore, a young man walked toward my car with his head down while holding a sign at chest level. He looked up just enough to have eye contact with me. I had a blessing ready to hand him along with a gospel track.  His step quickened when he saw my window roll down and I handed him the gift. I said, “what is your name, I’d like to pray for you?”  He spoke his name in a soft young voice that surprised me. I thought, “the face of our homeless is getting younger and younger.”  He shared a prayer request and was so thankful, but what happened next surprised me.

This young voice said, “how can I pray for you?” I was floored and quickly rattled off my prayer request. Wow, that was a first! I did not expect such a blessing. The following week, I saw the same young man with his cardboard sign. He walked toward my car (not recognizing me). I said, “Hi Mel, how are you today?”  He looks up with surprise and said “Hey, I’m still here and doing ok.” I thanked him for praying for me, gave him a gift and drove off. Mel had such a big smile on his face and so did I.

Sometimes, we receive blessings from strange places. I am reminded of the lyrics “what could be stranger, than God in a manger” from the song God Speaking by Mandisa. I find that I am truly blessed when I am blessing others, but to be prayed for from someone who has so little brings me joy. Mel knows the value of prayer and chooses to bless others even in his time of need.  He was happy to pray for me. This is joy that only God can give. Have you ever experienced the joy of giving at a low point in your life?

Please comment below, I’d really like to hear about your experience. Have a very blessed week.




Music Therapy

Happy New Year to you! I hope the year 2022 has been joyful and calm. My entry into this new year has been busier than I would like. If you are in the medical field, times are pretty rough. If you are suffering from illness, life may not be filled with happiness. As I minister to those who are ill or those caring for the ill, music is part of their therapy.

My family sang all the time. I wanted nothing to do with singing as I entered my pre-teen years. Even though I tried running from music, it seemed to follow me constantly. I joined the orchestra in middle school so I could get away from singing with my family. Next, I entered nursing school thinking certainly there would be no time for music, yet I was asked to sing at my pinning ceremony. Later, I wrote the Nurses Anthem in 2007 in honor of Florence Nightingale, the founder of Modern Day Nursing.

Needless to say, music has followed me throughout my life. I was given a book for my nursing graduation. I did not read the book until years later when I was asked to speak at a nursing event about music and health. The book was called “Music As Medicine” by Deforia Lane with Rob Wilkins. As I researched this topic, I was honored to speak with Dr. Lane about her musical journey. Ms. Lane aspired to become an opera singer, but plans changed when she saw the wonderful miracle of music in the life of cancer patients.

I also see the wonder of music in my own life, my patients, and others. Throughout history, music has conquered wars, saved lives, and changed hearts. David soothed King Saul’s anxiety by playing his harp. Trumpets blasted the Walls of Jericho in war. A patient was soothed by singing “Amazing Grace” with her nurse during a procedure. Hospice units are hopeful and peaceful because of music therapy interventions.

I don’t know what you are facing this New Year, but let music play a part in bringing you peace and healing. My favorite is music set to scripture. How about you?

“What am I to do? I will pray with my spirit, but I will pray with my mind also; I will sing praise with my spirit, but I will sing with my mind also.”

1 Corinthians 14:15.

Does music bring you peace or joy? Comment below.

Have a blessed and musical New Year.



A Life In Recovery

Are you living a life in recovery? What does it mean to be ‘in recovery’ anyway? My definition of recovery was “a 12-step process of working through substance abuse with the support of others”. Well, I was wrong. According to The Life Recovery Bible, “Recovery, is the simple but challenging process of daily seeking God to heal our wounded souls so we can help others in the process of their own healing.” Wow! That certainly includes me. If we are honest, this definition includes all of us.

I am part a Life Recovery Ministry at my church and I’m so glad I joined. As a volunteer, the healing is just as much for me as it is for those who come. I have learned that “without God, there is no recovery” from anything. Just name your demon; be it anger, sugar addiction, fear, anxiety, or _________, (you fill in the blank). I realized that “I am powerless to overcome my problems” without God’s help. 

How do you overcome life’s problems? Some have a friend to share life with, some shop, some dance, others may drink alcohol, or work too much!  Are you dealing with your life issues in a healthy way?

How do you know? I have found that I am not the best judge of how well I am handling a problem. The research I have read and most of all, God’s Word says that most people are not the best judge of how well they are doing in resolving their problems. For me, I need community. What sweet discovery when I engage with a trusted circle of friends who care about me enough to be honest and kind as they share what they see in me. Friends who pray for me and don’t’ judge me. This fellowship paves the way for God’s love to shine on my issues so healing and recovery can begin. My heart becomes fertile ground for positive change.

What are characteristics of a supportive community. A few of my favorite quotes provide the best characteristics of a healthy life community.

“But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” 1John 1:7

“And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone.” 1Thessalonians 5:14

“As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.” Proverbs 27:17

“Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be conceited.” Romans 12:16

“My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.” John 15: 12-13

None of those quotes mention one thing about living life alone. They all refer to the love of other people. Does your community look like this?  If not, find a different group to friends. Remember, as you gain insight and light from others, share what you are learning to guide someone else to recovery. I love this quote as well, “…we loved you so much that we shared with you not only God’s Good News but our own lives too.” 1 Thessalonians 2:8. This Bible verse has become my life mission.

If you want to learn more about living a “Life in Recovery”, check out the information below. Numerous resources are found on the “Life Recovery” website. Let your best life begin now!


Mother’s Day

One of the most celebrated days of the year is upon us. Mother’s Day is a few days away. How will you celebrate your Mother? I never met Ruth, my birth mother. I am told, I am like her in many ways. The precious lady who raised me is in heaven. Ms. Nancy Wilson (Mama) was truly an angel on Earth. She loved the Lord and she loved people…all people. Click the link for her story. https://deejones1.wordpress.com/?s=collard+greens. I also called my maternal grandmother (Emma) Mommy as she helped raise me on weekends and most holidays.

I learned so much from Mommy Emma. She modeled perseverance and the love of learning. She was passionate about God and His Word. I was able to meet my Dad’s Mom eight years ago and what a special blessing and gift to meet Grandma Margaret. I will not forget the two years we had together before her passing. Click the link for her story. https://deejones1.wordpress.com/2021/11/03/not-the-end-of-the-story/. I am blessed to have a precious Mother-in-love (Pearline) who loves me and nurtures me to this day.

So, get your creative juices flowing. Choose the perfect card or take that trip home to visit. This is not an event you want to miss. As the weather warms, I will be embarking on other writing ventures, traveling a bit, and spending time with those I love. I will post here from time to time during my hiatus, but will keep you in the loop on my other social platforms.

Here is an event for the musical moms in your life, the Annual 2nd Sunday Hymn Sing in Havre De Grace, MD. See the details below. You will also find ideas for the mom who is an avid reader on my Facebook and Instagram feed. If your mom likes journal writing, look no further; you can purchase a journal session with me which includes my journal guide “Who Names Their Daughter Demetrius? A Guided Journal of Personal Life Stories” by Dee Jones.

Enjoy your time as you celebrate “Mother’s Day” this week! God bless you and keep you.



Guided Journal Session $25 Gift Certificate (Journal Guide Included)

Proverbs 31: 28-30

28 Her children arise and call her blessed;
    her husband also, and he praises her:
29 “Many women do noble things,
    but you surpass them all.”
30 Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
    but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.


Happy Mother’s Day!

No Words

Have you every had one of those days that leave you speechless.  This past week, I had two family members sick in my home. These days if you sneeze, your first thought is “oh no, is it COVID”? So I pray, Lord heal my home and please let it just be allergies.

Next, I get the email that a friend has lost her teenage son and the memorial is this weekend.  My heart if heavy for this family as they lay their child to rest.  Then I get more news of another friend whose child is losing a long battle and may leave us soon. There are just no words.

I go to the grocery store to get a gift and a card for the upcoming memorial. After searching the aisles with my preschooler behind me, the clerk is filling the shelves. She is next to the card section which is in a new location now.  I search for the perfect card for this hurting family who lost their teen son. At this point I am talking out loud (to the cards).  What do you even say to someone? No card can relay the depth of pain, loss, or hopelessness one must feel when they lose a child. Then I hear the clerk answer me back! She says, “oh my Lord, you are right.” We begin to dialogue about life and loss. Yet this conversation did not end sadly. The clerk says, “we can pray and we know that God is with them and can bring comfort in this dark hour”. Wow, I did not expect that. I had no words. She had said it all. I did find a card. It was not perfect, but it spoke of prayer, comfort, and hope that only God can give.

So, I chose a money card and a few items, and I got in line. The cashier rings up my items and I prepare to pay. Mind you, the gift card was a nice amount as I really wanted to bless this family.  The clerk says, “do your items end here”? I said, “yes”. The stranger behind me says, “no, I’ll get it”.  I was sure this was a mistake and I reassured the lady that I was paying for items beyond this point. Again, “the stranger says I got it, I’m paying for all of it.” I look at the man and assure him that all was good and that I could pay for my items. My preschooler says, “what is he doing Mommy”? Almost speechless, I say, “he is paying for our groceries”. I insisted to the man, that I could pay for my items. He ignored me. I stuttered, “thank you”. I also let the stranger know that the gift card he purchased was for a family who loss their child. This time, he had “no words”.

Resources if you are grieving a loss:

Grief Journal


Nancy Guthrie Ministry to Grieving Parents


Photo by Rene Asmussen on Pexels.com

Pain Journal

March 28, 2022

Oh, the pain! Recently I had a few medical procedures performed while enduring chronic pain from another medical issue. After the last surgery, I was informed that the problem is chronic and could return. Well, it did return. Can you relate? Over the years I have kept a medical journal which includes a “Pain Journal” as well. I record my medications, allergies, list of surgeries and dates, test results and more. I realize writing is not for everyone, but if you have not tried it, give it a go and see what happens.

Below are a few writing prompts that have assisted me over the years:

  • Praying for my pain: I talk to God about my medical issues. He is the great physician and knows what I am going through. Writing my prayers helps my faith and gives me hope. Paul states that the “thorn in his flesh” keeps him from becoming conceited. He is made strong when he is weak. God’s grace is all he needs. 2 Corinthian 7-9
  • Describing the pain: I write about my pain, what makes it worse or better, when it began and any thoughts about my pain. This helps my doctors and I don’t have to remember everything. It’s written down.
  • Blessings of pain: Pain has warned me of illness and even saved my life. Pain keeps me dependent on God and not trust my own strength. Pain has led me to new friendships and a deeper prayer life. My faith has grown through pain.
  • Painful perspective: Be honest, take breaks, pain reminds me to pray for others in pain. Let the tears fall. Stay hopeful. You are not alone. Reach out to others for help. 2Kings 20:5b.

Give it a try; there is nothing to loose. I am investigating a new pain right now. I pray it does not lead to more surgery, but I am not afraid. I am hopeful and blessed to have other partners in pain to walk along side me. I also have faith that God will get me through whatever happens. God’s love never fails. Lamentations 3:22

Below are resources to get you started. Post your journal ideas in the comments section. I would love to read them. Be blessed and healthy.


Pain Journal


Real Me Journals at Amazon.com


Terrific Twosday 2/22/22

I could not help but write something about this Twosday 2/22/22! I saw in the news that Los Vegas hosted numerous wedding today. My son’s school had a special shirt day to commemorate 2/22/22. I posted a special Facebook prayer challenge to pray for 22 people today. I did add two more people to my list. I lost one of my journals earlier in the week and it was found today. I was so happy since I am close to completing this large journal. I definitely wanted to write an entry for today, so I will write a prayer for 22 (plus 2) people.

A friend of mine had some really good news and I am always happy to put good news in my journals. Often, my journals have sad news, let downs, missed opportunities, or prayer requests. I really like to highlight the good stuff! Did you have any good news today? Please share!

As a blogger and writer, dates mean a lot to me. I am disappointed when I forget to put a date next to an entry. I actually try to figure it out later so I can estimate a date. So I am intentional when I write and make sure to add the date. I did not know this, but 2/22/22 is a palindrome, “meaning it reads the same forward and backward and won’t occur again for another 10 years (CNN).”

As we end this Twosday, some will celebrate a wedding, some will celebrate a major milestone, others may not care at all. For today, 22 people (plus 2) will be prayed for as I journal. I will look back next year or the next decade (Lord willing) and see how this prayer was answered and then I’ll journal about the answers. Have a blessed Twosday and share your thoughts on 2/22/22 Day.




Photo by Tina Nord on Pexels.com

Sing A Song

After his solo, I was speechless. Tears filled my eyes and I was undone. This older gentleman walked… no, he limped to the microphone. There was no accompaniment, just his voice. He began to sing with aged vocal chords, shaky with nerves, and feeble from illness. I was scheduled to sing after him. I thought, how sweet to allow this older gentleman to sing. My expectations were not very high. I actually prayed for him as he seemed to struggle a bit.

Then the words left his lips, “Why should I feel discouraged, why should the shadows come, why should my heart be lonely, and long for heaven and home.” His voice still feeble, and pausing out of rhythm for more air with each stanza, he kept singing, “For Jesus is my portion, a constant friend is He, his eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.” By this time he seemed to be glowing. His hands raised and eyes tearing. By now some were singing with him, but his voice was stronger now and his stance more profound. He was like an angle from Heaven. I was awe struck but didn’t know why.

This gentleman was a true worshiper. No piano or guitar needed. He had walked with the Lord a long time and you could tell that God had delivered him from much over the years. I am reminded of the days when COVID first hit and churches were closed nation wide. We were forced to gather in smaller groups, sing virtually without a band. He sang his song and gave no thought to a cracking voice. It was as if he and the Lord were alone, no one else was in the room. Yet we were invited to witness this intimate exchange of a loving Father to his son.

I don’t know what this hymn meant to the older man, but it spoke volumes to those watching and listening. I like listening to the hymns of old. The stories speak of lives lived during good times and bad. They are songs of hope when all hope is lost. My Mama Nancy’s favorite was “Amazing Grace”. She was in a coma, breathing her last breath…then she sat up, looked at me and said, “Sing my song”. I was in shock. I began to sing, Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound, that saved a wretch like me… I once was lost but now I am found, was blind, but now I see. She went back to sleep, and entered heaven’s gates.

What is your favor hymn and why?




Collard Greens

My Mama Nancy loved to cook. The smell from her kitchen was heavenly. In addition to her culinary skills, she cared deeply for others. Mama never stayed upset for long and always forgave those who hurt her. She was a wise woman. What I remember lately are her wonderful collard greens! Oh, how she could cook the best greens I ever tasted.

My collards will never compare to hers, yet this legacy lives on. Mama’s greens not only blessed your taste buds; I believe they blessed the soul. Her chocolate cake worked miracles too. Let me share how this was true. Mama Nancy lived a full life, she served faithfully at church, she took care of homeless people, and served the Lord with all her heart. Cancer invaded her body until she needed around-the-clock care. A few days before she passed away, a lady visited her in the hospital. She lived in our old Virginia neighborhood. I did not recognize her.  She began to tell us her story with my other family members present.

Martha began to share how she was a different person when we were neighbors years ago. She stated, “Some nights I would be slumped over on my porch and Miss Nancy would put me to bed. I drank so much, I’d black out. When I was hungry, she would feed me. Those greens and her sweet spirit nursed my soul. She was the only Jesus I knew until one day, I met Jesus for myself all because of Miss Nancy.”

We were all in tears. My family and people all over our neighborhood loved Mama Nancy and her collard greens. Do you have a special ministry? Maybe red rice, handmade greeting cards, peach cobbler, or Christmas cookies may be your ministry to someone.  As I think of goals for 2022, I am considering ways I can be like Jesus to others. I am reminded that we are to “encourage each other to good works (Hebrews 10:24). So what ways do you bless others? I hope you are encouraged to share your time, love, and gifts as you share Jesus.